NOTICE TO STAKEHOLDERS
RULES FOR THE USE OF THE EU ECOLABEL
The United Kingdom submitted on 29 March 2017 the notification of its intention to withdraw from the Union pursuant to Article 50 of the Treaty on European Union. This means that, unless a ratified withdrawal agreement1 establishes another date, all Union primary and secondary law will cease to apply to the United Kingdom from 30 March 2019, 00:00h (CET) (‘the withdrawal date’).2 The United Kingdom will then become a ‘third country’.3
Preparing for the withdrawal is not just a matter for EU and national authorities but also for private parties.
In view of the considerable uncertainties, in particular concerning the content of a possible withdrawal agreement, all interested parties, and especially economic operators, are reminded of legal repercussions, which need to considered when the United Kingdom becomes a third country.
Subject to any transitional arrangement that may be contained in a possible withdrawal agreement, as of the withdrawal date, Regulation (EC) No 66/2010 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 25 November 2009 on the EU Ecolabel4 (“the EU Ecolabel Regulation”) no longer applies to the United Kingdom. This has in particular the following consequences for goods placed on the EU-27 market as from the withdrawal date:5
As from the withdrawal date the EU Ecolabel Competent Body designated by the United Kingdom according to Article 4 of the EU Ecolabel Regulation will lose its
1 Negotiations are ongoing with the United Kingdom with a view to reaching a withdrawal agreement.
2 Furthermore, in accordance with Article 50(3) of the Treaty on European Union, the European Council, in agreement with the United Kingdom, may unanimously decide that the Treaties cease to apply at a later date.
3 A third country is a country not member of the EU.
4 OJ L27, 30.1.2010, p. 1.
5 For goods placed on the EU market before the withdrawal date, the EU is trying to agree solutions with the United Kingdom in the withdrawal agreement. The essential principles of the EU’s position on goods placed on the market under Union law before the withdrawal date are available here: https://ec.europa.eu/commission/publications/position-paper-goods-placed-market-under-union-lawwithdrawal-date_en.
status. It will not be in the position to carry out the tasks described in the EU Ecolabel Regulation. It will therefore be removed from the list of EU Ecolabel Competent Bodies on the EU Ecolabel website and its right to access the Ecolabel catalogue (ECAT) database will be removed.
EU Ecolabels awarded by the EU Ecolabel Competent Body designated by the United Kingdom can no longer be used on products placed on the EU-27 market as of the withdrawal date, and on associated promotional material.6
Where economic operators hold an EU Ecolabel contract issued by the UK Ecolabel Competent Body prior to the withdrawal date and plan to continue using the EU Ecolabel when placing the product concerned on the EU-27 market as from the withdrawal date, they are advised to consider one of the two following options:
Applying for a new contract with an EU-27 Ecolabel Competent Body or
Arranging for a transfer – on the basis of a contractual arrangement between the holder of the EU Ecolabel, the UK Ecolabel Competent Body, and the EU-27 Ecolabel Competent Body – of the file and the corresponding contract from the UK Ecolabel Competent Body to an EU-27 Ecolabel Competent Body.
The website of the Commission on the EU Ecolabel provides for general information concerning the EU Ecolabel application process and EU Ecolabel Competent Bodies These pages will be updated with further information, where necessary.
European Commission Directorate-General for the Environment
6 Article 9(11) of the EU Ecolabel Regulation.